On enhancing the solubility of curcumin by microencapsulation in whey protein isolate via spray drying

Wenjie Liu, Xiao Dong Chen, Zeneng Cheng, Cordelia Selomulya

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80 Citations (Scopus)


The encapsulation of curcumin in whey protein microparticles by spray drying was done to improve solubility and thus, the bioavailability of curcumin. In solution, curcumin formed soluble complexes with whey protein isolate (WPI) via hydrophobic interactions and its solubility increased linearly with WPI concentrations. Solutions of WPI-curcumin complexes were spray-dried as uniform microparticles via a microfluidic jet spray dryer. Nearly 100% curcumin was retained in amorphous state and the microparticles could be easily rehydrated as transparent dispersions irrespective of the drying temperature. Antioxidant properties of these microparticles were studied by DPPH test, showing a higher DPPH radical scavenging activity for curcumin-loaded microparticles compared to that of WPI particles as benchmark. The ability to generate easily dissolved powders containing water-insoluble ingredients such as curcumin is a beneficial approach for pharmaceutical and functional foods applications.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)189 - 195
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Food Engineering
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2016

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